• Outplacement Reminder - The Employer Should Take the Initiative
  • December 10, 2008 | Authors: Emmanuel Plasschaert; Frederik Van Remoortel
  • Law Firm: Crowell & Moring - Brussels Office
  • Far too often, employers forget that in case of termination of an employment agreement of an employee who is 45 years old or older (this age limit can be lower in certain sectors), they should in principle provide him with an outplacement offer.

    A short review of the basic principles that currently apply (Collective Bargaining Agreement 82) may be useful.

    There are three criteria which the employee should meet at the time of dismissal in order to be entitled to outplacement:

    1. the employee may not have been dismissed for compelling reasons;
    2. the employee should be at least 45 years old and
    3. the employee should have at least one year of uninterrupted seniority within the company.

    Since January 1, 2007, the conditions for these rules to apply have been reinforced and detailed:

    1. the employer must take the initiative of presenting the employee who meets the required conditions with a replacement offer within 15 days of the end of the employment agreement;
    2. the strict procedure to be followed by the employee and the employer has been adapted;
    3. certain categories of employees are no longer automatically entitled to outplacement (some part-time employees, employees on early retirement plan, …), but should make an explicit request for that purpose.

    For a list of these companies, please consult http://www.federgon.be/ledenlijst.94.0.html